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We are given the task to oversee a spiritual community. We are volunteer managers, coaches, counselors, teachers, scholars, and much more. It doesn’t take much for your church leaders (some of those who are closest to you) to turn against you. How does a pastor navigate through church conflict, especially if he/she is in the center of the problem? 

It is easy to feel isolated and ganged up on. I want to offer you a couple resources that may be able get you through a dark time in ministry.

Prepare for peace. I highly recommend the book, The Peacemaker by Ken Sande. There is also an accompanying workbook available. It has been an invaluable resource to my ministry, and I recently picked it up again to read. If you can follow the principles in this book, you will be able to offer a model that both parties can follow for mediation.

Find a spiritual counselor. Pastors don’t have many people to talk to about their private challenges. A professional counselor will listen and guide you through tough times. Over the last twenty years, I have talked out many problems and issues with a seasoned counselor. It has improved my pastoral ministry, and my marriage. Check with your insurance carrier, as many treatment plans are covered.

Walk through a performance review. Many pastors are weary of going through a review by their church. I believe it actually strengthens your position as the pastor. It helps you identify your area of growth, and helps you articulate some boundaries on what you can and cannot do. I am currently starting the process of a performance review at my church. I will write more, and share the results once it has been completed.

Dr. Kumar Dixit, Ministerial Director